A Powerful Natural Antioxidant for Health and Beauty

Nature or Nurture? Alpha Lipoic Acid Could Help Bring Out the Best in You

Find out how alpha lipoic acid protects DNA from free radicals.

DNA strands in each cell contain genes, which are the natural blueprint for the traits that make each of us unique. This includes the risks for developing certain diseases. However, decades of research demonstrate that outside factors can change how those blueprints are actually carried out. These factors include: (ii.71-72)

  • Diet
  • Environment
  • Stress
  • Behavior

These blueprint changes are not permanent modifications to our genetic DNA. They are epigenetic changes that in effect stimulate healthy genes while keeping unhealthy ones silent (or vice versa). (ii.71-72)

There are 3 known mechanisms that make epigenetic changes. Nutrients can trigger or prevent these epigenetic mechanisms directly and indirectly. (ii.73)

Some ways that alpha lipoic acid regulates these triggers and the diseases they may affect include:

Table II.2: Alpha Lipoic Acid's Epigenetic Activity
Alpha Lipoic Acid Activity Why is this Important?

Prevent adverse epigenetic changes to genes that control natural antioxidant protection. (ii.74)

May help prevent diabetic retinopathy. High blood sugar levels in diabetes can make harmful modifications to genes that produce natural antioxidants. Preventing reduced levels of antioxidants helps protect against free radical damage and lower mitochondria levels in retinal cells. (ii.74)

Prevent potentially epigenetic DNA methylation changes. (ii.75)

May help protect against changes caused by radiation. Low-dose radiation from medical radiation and nuclear accidents (such as Chernobyl and Fukushima Daiichi) accounts for most of the exposure humans encounter. It can cause DNA methylation, epigenetic changes that result in increased cancer-promoting cell damage by free radicals. In animal studies, babies born to mothers given antioxidants (including alpha lipoic acid) were protected against these epigenetic changes that actually changed hair color. (ii.75)

Stimulates sirtuin genes, which produce enzymes that control deacetylating epigenetic mechanisms. (ii.76-77)

Counteract insulin resistance and related disorders (such as heart disease and fatty liver disease). (ii.76-77)

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